Arduino Vivarium Automation

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I suppose I'll post this little WIP.
At the end of August my girlfriend and I are taking the plunge...no not marriage. We are adopting a little baby noodle. There's a reptile expo that comes through town and we went to one last year and fell in love. So we have been planning for this year to get one.
I have 3d modeled most of the enclosure I'll be building. It is going to be out of wood with stain and sealer. The floor is going to be acrylic or pvc. I will attach heat tape to the bottom for the hot side and there will be routed channels in the ceiling for led strips. This is where Arduino comes in.

I plan to have temp sensors on the heat tape to read the temp at both ends of the enclosure. It will compare the actual temp with what I want it at and decide whether or not to switch the relay on or off.

For lighting I will rout channels in the ceiling of the enclosure. I haven't decided whether I want to rout all the way through so there can be some ambient lighting out of the top or just stick with the noodle's light. I will decide that later. Anyways, I will place the led strips with hot glue or something and then pour epoxy into the channel to diffuse the light. I got a RTC board for the Arduino and plan to have the lights fade in based on time of day. So at dawn they very lightly come on and gradually fade in till they are brightest at noon. Then fade out till dusk where they turn off.

I have started ordering parts and stuff. This is my first time using arduino, but it doesn't seem too hard. I have taken classes on C++ so I know the basics. Now for some images cause tl;dr

This is my proposed circuit. The temp sensors I have are a bit different but it's the same basic concept. There's a DHT22 to read ambient Humidity and Temp as well. I believe the LCD I got comes as a kit so I can wire it up with the pot and buttons and only use two wires for the Arduino.



This is my 3d modeled enclosure minus the door. It's a box...a glorified box. I was learning AutoCAD as I did this so it took me way too long. It is 18" X 48" X 15" I think. There's a 4" substrate dam in the front.
 

ShockSlayer

Ivan - the tyranny of evil men
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Looks pretty good man, but I think you should scrap the entire idea and just adopt a whale instead.

Let me know because I know a guy.
 
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I'm not sure I have the square footage to keep one...I have one tattooed on my torso and he doesn't require any maintenance.

The heat tape and Uno board I ordered will be arriving today. Not sure if i'll have the time to work on it till the weekend though.
 

bentomo

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Cool! I love to see these types of unique projects
 
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I have made progress in the last couple of days. I have my prototype almost all wired up as far as the temp control. I have the DHT22 Reading ambient temp and humidity and printing to the lcd. Then I have my DSB1820 wired the same way to monitor the heat tape. I wrote an if else statement so that if the temp is below a certain number, the relay powering the LED at the moment will kick on. When it reaches that temp or above it kicks off. I will eventually be wiring the heat tape to the relay and changing the values of the temps I want but as far as testing goes, it's all in working order. I might purchase a Pro Mini board for the final and permanent wiring set up.
 
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I don't have any pictures, but I finally got to work on the construction of the enclosure last weekend. I have all the pieces cut from Birch plywood. The design did change slightly (conveniently right after I made my first cut...) from front opening to a partial top opening. I still have to route the channels for the led lighting in the ceiling.

The prototyping is all done. I have to do a batch order of some more sensors so I don't have to leave Aldrich freezing while I build his new home. This coming weekend I should be assembling the box. I have to get some plexi custom cut from a place here in town for the bottom and front window.

All in all it's coming together quite nicely. Pics later.
 
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